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Teaching Innovative Thinking

(File photo of a school bus)

(File photo of a school bus)

mattleman_125 Education Reports
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By Dr. Marciene Mattleman

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Thomas Friedman’s New York Times article – “Need a Job? Invent It” – quotes Tony Wagner’s new book about creating innovators and entrepreneurs. While high wage middle skilled jobs sustained people for years, there are now only high wage, high skilled jobs and kids must learn how to think.

Because knowledge is available on the Internet, what you need to know matters far less than what you can do with what you know; the ability to innovate, to solve problems, the need for critical thinking, communication and collaboration.

We need to teach the skills to bring “three powerful ingredients into motivation: play, passion and purpose.” Teachers should be judged on evidence of improvement of work, and kids earning merit badges, not just test scores.

In Finland kids can leave school “innovation-ready” and US programs such as 500 K-12 schools affiliated with the Hewlet Foundation and a consortium of 100 school districts, EdLeader21, are developing new approaches to learning. Important reading!